Your new Hardwood flooring will generally be easy to maintain. Just need to remember that water is the biggest enemy of hardwood floors. Your floors can warp, shift and lose their luster if you allow them to get wet. The best way to avoid these problems is to wipe up spills with a dry cloth and never use a wet mop to clean the floors. Keep floors dirt free with a broom or vacuum and only use cleaning products that are safe for wood floors.
You can also extend the life of your wood floors by placing rugs in high traffic areas. If you are moving furniture around the room, make sure you use felt gliders or some other fabric to protect the wood. Sunlight can also damage wood, so keep an eye on the parts of the floor that get direct sunlight. You can use curtains or blinds to limit the sun.
If you take good care of your hardwood floors, they will last a lifetime and require only periodic refinishing. The best part of hardwood floors is that scuffs, scratches and imperfections can be sanded out every few years, so that your floors will continue to look like they were just installed.
Don't Damp Mop
Water and hardwood floors don't mix! Use only the manufacturer's recommended cleaning products on your hardwood floor.
Small stones, mud and gritty dirt tracked in from outside can scratch the finish of your wood floor's finish. To help combat this use long bristle welcome mats placed at all outside entrances for people to wipe their feet on before entering onto the floors. Also, vacuum using a soft bristle brush attachment.
Don't Use Oil Soaps
There are many over the counter oil-based soaps and wax based cleaning products that may damage or dull the finish of your wood floor. The best suggestion is to only use the manufacturers recommended cleaning products on your hardwood flooring.
Never Wax a Urethane Floor
If your hardwood floor has a polyurethane finish never use a paste wax on the floor's surface. A paste wax may form a sticky film on your floor and allow tracked in dirt to stick to your wood finish. Polyurethane finishes will not adhere to any wax and adding a fresh coat of polyurethane to your floor will be very difficult.
Wipe Spills Immediately
When accidents happen and some liquid gets spilled on your hardwood floor, you should use a slightly damp white cloth, or paper towel to immediately clean up and dry the effected area. For more difficult spots, follow the manufacturer's recommended cleaning procedures.
Use the Proper Chair Glides
Narrow wheels, sharp wooden legs or metal furniture legs can scratch and dent hardwood floors. Any furniture that rests directly on top of a hardwood floor should have felt protectors, or furniture coasters under all it's feet. For extremely heavy objects such as a piano, use wide, non-staining rubber cups. Purchasing floor protectors is cheap insurance for protecting your hardwood floor investment.